Zoe Simpson

Founder of the Mount Gambier Hay Run

SANomineeYoung Australian of the Year2022

In late 2019, then 16-year-old Zoe Simpson was inspired to help farmers after a devastating bushfire ripped through South Australian farmland. It burned through more than 15,000 hectares, killing livestock and destroying buildings – and leaving famers without essential feed for their animals.

After a chat with her father Scott, Zoe started to gather hay with the help of a family friend before putting out a call on social media. From there, her efforts gained momentum and grew into what has become the Mount Gambier Hay Run.

In January 2021, the Mount Gambier Hay Run conducted a delivery drive to the Lucindale community after a blaze in Blackford left around 16,000 hectares burnt. In just three days, Zoe and her team managed to deliver more than 70 trucks full of hay to an overwhelmingly grateful community.

Believing farmers are the backbone of the country and deserving of help, Zoe shows a tireless effort in supporting South Australia’s farming communities in their times of need.